Friday, 2 March 2012

Newsletter Issue 214, March 2012

Sam Young Newsletter

Issue 214, March 2012
Hi guys,
Remember when your Mum made one of you cut the cake and the other one chose? Read about how Equity... As We See It can affect us in the workplace below.
How's your hearing? Ever made a lyric gaffe? Check out Mondegreens below. 
Don't forget, if you want to be taken off my mailing list, click here to send me a reply e-mail and I will remove your name.

Equity... As We See It

Carol Kinsey Goman, Ph.D., is an executive coach, author, and keynote speaker who addresses the US government, associations and business audiences around the world. She has kindly let me share with you an excerpt from her latest book, "The Silent Language of Leaders".
Let's play a game.
Here are the rules: We'll be asked to split a sum of money. I get to make the split and you get to choose whether to accept or reject the split. And if you reject it, both of us will walk away empty-handed.
Rationally, I should realize my advantage and offer a lopsided split in my favor and you should accept the uneven split -- because any amount of money is better than nothing. Right?
Wrong. If we're like everyone else who plays the game, we'll end up with an even split.
Here's why:
While the fairness of the split shouldn't logically affect the second player's decision, it nearly always does. If offered a lopsided split, the second player will reject the deal, and neither player will get any money. So most people end up offering a fifty-fifty split to the second person.
To find out why people react in this way, a team of Princeton researchers attached players to functional MRI machines. They discovered that when people are offered an unfair split, a primal part of their brains known as the anterior insula sends out signals of disgust and anger. It doesn't matter one little bit that rejecting the split - regardless of how unfair - is an irrational financial decision. It feels right.
That's the power of what I call "the equity factor." And it has everything to do with leadership in turbulent times.
A close look at the psychology of relationships reveals that most individuals automatically attempt to keep a mental balance between what they contribute to a relationship and what they get back from it. When employees believe that they are putting more into their company than they are getting back, or when they do not perceive the rewards distribution to be equitable, engagement slips dramatically.
When employees look for balance through equitable treatment, it is their perception of the treatment, rather than the treatment itself that defines reality. I once interviewed employees at a public utility where workers were negotiating a 2 percent raise that management was resisting. At that same time, the fleet of corporate vans was being repainted. Instead of viewing this as a necessary expense, the employees' perception was that it was unfair of the company to spend money on vehicles while it argued about a salary increase with employees: "How dare they throw money at those trucks and then quibble about a lousy 2 percent raise!"
The CEO of a chemical manufacturing company put it this way: "As a leader you must make it a routine part of your decision-making process to ask the question: Will this action be perceived as equitable?"
As companies [and nonprofits] downsize, restructure and refocus, employees are asked to do more and work harder. And they have, on the whole. But their resentment is most frequently seen in their reaction to executive compensation. Big disparities in pay between executives and the work force, especially in times of downsizing and plant closures, can destroy employee engagement -- just when it is most needed.
Here's how one employee sees it: "The biggest budget cuts were employee-focused. They eliminated all our merit increases, rewards and recognition programs. And then the top management got bonuses. I used to be a 'gung-ho' employee. Now I think my loyalty has been misplaced."
Goman, Carol Kinsey PhD (2011). The Silent Language of Leaders: How Body Language Can Help – or Hurt – How You Lead. USA: Jossey-Bass (pp. 90-91)


So what's a mondegreen?
A mondegreen is a song or poetry lyric that we mishear; and it is usually quite funny (some think it is an improvement on the original). For example "spare him his life from this one-sausage tea" is a mondegreen for "spare him his life from this monstrosity" from Queen's Bohemian Rhapsody.
Thought up by Sylvia Wright, a Harpers Bazaar contributor, the term mondegreen is actually a mondegreen itself. Sylvia had always thought that the last two lines of the Scots ballad, The Bonnie Earl of Murray, ran "They hae slain the Earl Amurray, And Lady Mondegreen", when the actual words were "They have slain the Earl O’ Moray, And layd him on the green".
Hence in 1954 the term mondegreen was coined - by Silvia - in the absence of 'proper' term, and has been adopted into the English lexicon.
Some purlers include:
  • "Haffely, Gaffely, Gaffely, Gonward", instead of "Half a league, half a league | Half a league onward" from Lord Tennyson's Charge of the Light Brigade.
  • "Wrapped up like a douche" instead of "Revved up like a deuce" from Manfred Mann's Earth Band's Blinded by the Light.
  • "She's got electric boobs, and mohair shoes" instead of "She's got electric boots, a mohair suit" from Elton John's Benny & the Jets.
  • "She was a fax machine, she kept her modem clean" instead of "She was a fast machine, she kept her motor clean" from AC/DC's You Shook Me All Night Long.
  • "She's got a chicken to fry" instead of "She's got a ticket to ride" from The Beatles' Ticket to Ride (doesn't the song title give it away?!).

Word Copy & Paste Shortcut

TechRepublic posted a great tip for Word recently; a faster way of copying text, shapes or anything else, within a document (this also works in Outlook). For example, if you wanted to copy some text, you would normally take four steps. You would:
  1. Highlight the text to select it
  2. Key Ctrl and C to copy
  3. Click your mouse to where you want the text to be repeated
  4. Key Ctrl and P to paste.
But what you can do is just use the Ctrl key, as follows:
  1. Select the text.
  2. Key Ctrl and hold the key down.
  3. Move the text to where you want it.
Done. Isn't that easy?!

TLAs for SMEs

Here are this newsletter's TLAs (Three Letter Acronyms) for you:
  • GCC, Global Credit Crunch, and
  • GFC, Global Financial Crisis

Please feel free to email me with any TLAs that you want to get the bottom (meaning!) of.

Tips, Short+Hot Keys
In this newsletter, we are look at all you can do with Page commands in Access:
  • Access "Display the next screen to the right while working within Pivot Table Wizard" Alt & Page Down
  • Access "Display the previous screen to the left while working within Pivot Table Wizard" Alt & Page Up
  • Access "Extend the selection one screen down" Shift & Page Down
  • Access "Go down one screen, page or window, or at the end of the record, moves to the equivalent page on the next record, , or scroll to the next "page" inside a table, or to the next "page" of the diagram, or to the end of a help topic in larger increments, or view the next page (when fit to window is selected), or move down one page when using a combo box or list box or one window when working in database view or one full screen when working in print preview and layout preview or when working in a pivot table list, display the next screen" Page Down
  • Access "Go to the previous tab when working in a tabbed or help dialog box or move to the current field in the previous record or go to the same field in the previous record or go left one screen" Ctrl & Page Up
  • Access "Go up one full screen, page or window; at the end of the record, moves to the equivalent page on the previous record, or scroll to the previous "page" inside a table, or to the previous "page" of the diagram or to the beginning of a help topic in larger increments, or display the previous screen when working with a pivot table list, or go up one page when working in form view; at the end of the record, use to move to the equivalent page on the previous record, or move up one page when using a combo box or list box or one window when working in database, or scroll up one full screen when working in print preview and layout preview or when navigating a database diagram, scroll to the previous "page" inside a table or the previous "page" of the diagram" Page Up
  • Access "Move to the current field in the next record or go to the same field in the next record or go right one screen" Ctrl & Page Down
  • Access "Reduce a selection by one screen when working with a Pivot Table list" Shift & Page Up

Hot Linx
For a reminder of the lighter side of life, check out this track from the Meaning of Life, with pictures, to put things in perspective at
With 61% of staff as Gen Y, 28% Gen X & 11% baby boomers, Deloitte are using Social Media to connect with clients and employees. Read all about it at
How does your potential candidate fit your organisational culture? If culture hasn't been a consideration thus far, perhaps you need to read HR Daily's article at

                                Catch you again soon!! E-mail your suggestions to me here

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